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Tips to choose the right carpet

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Carpeted floors are a time honoured choice in many dwellings, not simply because they provide a comfortable and luxurious ambience, but also for their low cost, and low maintenance. Now, we're not talking about those dreadful porridge-hued worn out floor coverings popular during the '70s and '80s, but rather their new stylishly practical and ultra-versatile modern successors. Both cosy and effortlessly homely, carpet is a brilliant way to evoke a sensuous luxury within any domestic space. 

These days there exists a vast array of different options. Colours, designs, patterns, and qualities provide countless possibilities, and it can be tricky knowing where to begin! Additionally, you want to consider how your new carpet will match the room, and ensure you choose something durable enough to suit its situation in the home. 

Today on homify we are here to help. We have collated six essential factors we believe are of the utmost importance. From understanding the fundamentals when purchasing your new carpeted flooring, to picking something that will stand the test of time, we have you covered. Check out the tips below, and choose your new carpet with confidence. 

Choose carpet according to its room

As well as picking a carpet for the intended usage, it is also a good idea to consider which room the new flooring will be within. For example, if you are designing a new bedroom, and looking for a carpet, a common choice is polyester. Polyester suits low to medium foot traffic, and is available in a range of different designs. Conversely, nylon carpet is highly durable and suits high traffic areas such as entrances or living rooms. 

Furthermore, colour is a top priority. If you have children or pets, you probably want to avoid light colours such as white or cream that may show animal hair, and stains. Think about where your carpet is going, and pick a style, colour and design that matches its location. 

Choose carpet according to its usage

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Flock Living

Flock carpets made in 100% Laneve, a premium wool sourced from Wools of New Zealand

Flock Living

Firstly, when choosing carpet you want to consider its usage. Where is your carpet going, and what purpose will it serve? Usage is extremely important when picking a carpet, as it ultimately affects the material, design, colour, and style you will choose. Usage includes two different things. Firstly, how often will the carpet be used, and secondly, what is it intended to do for the space. If you are installing carpet for a living room, you will perhaps desire something that is soft and welcoming, but additionally, something that will stand the test of time. 

Consider the usage of your new carpet, and remember to pick a style and type that works in your favour. 

Stain resistance

With each different material comes benefits and disadvantages. In order to choose the correct carpet for your space you need to carefully think about what each material can offer your home. One common question that people ask when carpeting their home is how stain resistant a floor can be. Some fibres will have inherent stain resistance based on their make-up, whereas others will be treated. Stain treatments can drastically change the usability and durability of your carpet, but may affect their eco-friendliness too. Check with the manufacturer, or speak to a professional to ensure you get what you are looking for. 

Material options

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Sinclair Till


Sinclair Till

When it comes to carpet there are numerous options and possibilities. In order to give you a good idea of the different materials, we have broken down the choices into different sections: 

1. Firstly we have the most popular and commonly used of all carpets: nylon. Nylon carpet is a man-made fibre that is known for feeling soft to the touch, and very comfortable. Additionally, nylon is available in a multitude of hues and shades, making it particularly popular for those who are after that exact colour match for their room. It is found in cut pile and loop pile styles, adding to its accessibility. Nylon is not naturally stain resistant, but generally treated to provide an excellent resistance, and is ultra-durable. 

2. Next up is polyester. Polyester is essentially the cheaper option available, but has its drawbacks as it is not as durable, or as strong as nylon. Many polyester carpets these days are made from recycled materials, and this contributes to the eco-friendliness. 

3. Polytrimethylene Terephthalate or commonly PTT carpet is another alternative that is marketed under the name Triexta. Developed in the '40s, it wasn't until the '90s that it became popular. It is essentially another type of polyester with better stain resistance, but unfortunately a tendency to attract dry and oily soil substances that can limit its life. 

4. Fourth on the list is polypropylene carpet. Known as olefin carpet, this fibre is water resistant, and solution dyed. This means the colour is built into the fibre, and generally will never lose its vibrancy, even when exposed to light, bleach, harsh chemicals, or other elements. It is inexpensive, but does not always wear well in high traffic areas

5. The fifth and final material is wool. Cost prohibitive for most individuals, wool carpet is usually double or triple the cost of the aforementioned options. However, if you are looking for luxury, opulence and durability, wool is a sound choice. Hard-wearing and extremely soft, wool is also eco-friendly, offering its user the finest in texture and tone.

Ensure suitable durability

modern  by Flock Living, Modern
Flock Living

Flock carpets made in 100% Laneve, a premium wool sourced from Wools of New Zealand

Flock Living

Carpet is an investment. Definitely not the cheapest item to install when renovating or building, the durability of your carpet will be of the utmost concern, especially when it might save you money in the long run. 

There are a few things that directly relate to your carpet's longevity and ability to withstand wear and tear. These are the thickness or density of the carpet, the construction of the fibre, and the material it is made from. Density is how tightly packed the fibres are to one another. For a more durable floor, you will want to choose fibres that are close together, meaning they will 'crush' less. Of course, this does impact on the softness of the carpet, but will mean you have a more durable floor. 

Maintenance, budget, and upkeep

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Crown Floors

Powder Horn

Crown Floors

Finally, yet no less importantly we have budget, maintenance, and upkeep of your new floor. Essentially the maintenance of carpet will be directly related to the type of fibre you choose. Your budget will dictate your options, but with so many varieties available, it should be easy to find what you are looking for. Additionally, you should consider the underlay that will be installed with the carpet. Avoid plain foam underlay as it will crush, and eventually need to be replaced, adding extra to the overall lifetime cost of your floor. It is best to speak to your flooring specialist about underlay, as each company will offer different choices and possibilities. 

Choosing carpet can be a tricky task, and with so many options it can be easy to become overwhelmed. Never rush into your purchase, but instead get quotes and estimates to form an opinion and idea of the market before buying. 

We hope our Ideabook offered you some practical considerations and ideas, if you would like to continue reading, check out: The handy guide to kitchen flooring

Did that Ideabook help inform your carpet purchase? We'd love to hear any other tips and tricks you may have for our homify community in the commen...
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